humans of coffee
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Humans of coffee: Tyrone Watson

Who is Tyrone Watson?

A handsome spiritual cowboy and aspiring beam of light. At least, that’s what my Instagram bio says. I’d say that I’m a twenty-something year old who hasn’t got it all figured out just yet. I’m a human being, yogi and extremely passionate young dude who can sing along to any musical at the drop of a hat. But more than that, l love coffee so, so much that I packed up my desk at a corporate job to jump head-first into the coffee industry with nothing but my background as a volunteer barista, my relentless optimism and my desire to learn.

One day I’m hoping to include coffee professional, barista trainer and Batman.

Tyrone feels so formal. Just Ty is perfect.

What is your favourite childhood memory?

I’d probably say it’s all the simple stuff. I’m an empathetic person so how things feel is so important to me. Getting picked up from school in the afternoon, falling asleep in the back of the car and adventuring down to the coast during December. As I get older those really ordinary moments become more and more special.


Photograph by Lianri Malan

If you could have a do-over in life, what would you do differently?

I’m here to learn as much as possible, so I don’t make a habit of spending a lot of time looking behind me because it always served a purpose. If I had to give my younger self some advice: Listen less, feel more and don’t take anything too seriously.

And buy more Bitcoin. Or sell more Bitcoin. I’m still not sure exactly what Bitcoin is.

What do you feel most proud of?

Always having a sense of humour. Life is tough whether you laugh or not, but it’s way more fun if you do. Falling in love with coffee and leaving my corporate job when I recognised that it wasn’t right for me makes me feel good, too.


Photograph by Lianri Malan

If you could keep only 3 possessions, what would they be and why?

  • My iPhone. It’s such a convenient camera and learning tool.
  • A yoga mat to practice anywhere.
  • Birkenstocks. There’s a line in Will & Grace where Will says, “And by the way some sandals can be very dressy.” I’m both horrified and impressed at how often I hear myself saying the same thing.

What do you want your tombstone to say?

The same thing as my high school year book: “So long, and thanks for all the fish.”

What is @boymeetsbean?

Boy meets bean actually started with some advice from Shan Venter (@pretoriacoffeegirl) during a long chat about getting started in the coffee industry.

Technically, it’s an Instagram-based photo blog that explores coffee, coffee culture and coffee people in South Africa. More than that, it was a way of filling my time when I left my job by forcing me to adventure to different coffee shops and engage with the people behind the counter to learn as much as I can about coffee.

I’m an incredibly visual person and I love taking photos. Instagram is such an easy, accessible way to explore and express that creativity.


Photograph by Lianri Malan

What is your favorite kind of coffee?

At home, I love a French Press. Otherwise, a single cortado is my go-to. A real favourite at the moment is a Konga Natural from Yirgacheffe, Ethiopia.

In which coffee shops are we likely to bump into you?

Spout Coffee in Pretoria, especially over weekends. During the week I’m usually at Vintage Coffee in Menlo Park, or out and about in Joburg. I’m in love with Dear Maria.

What does a perfect day look like?

Early morning. Black coffee. Good music. Better people.

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